Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu unveiled Trump Heights, a future settlement located in the Golan Heights during a naming ceremony, calling it a historic day. Among the praise received from Netanyahu, President Donald Trump was hailed as a friend of Israel. The name was given in honor of President Trump having formally recognized Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
President Trump has consistently made it clear that Israel ranks at the top of America’s allies and has taken actions many have criticized, including moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem after declaring it the capital of Israel. This sparked widespread protests in the Middle East and United States.
Benjamin Netanyahu has previously given praise to President Trump, declaring “Israel has never had a better friend.” The heads of state see eye-to-eye on most issues concerning the region. President Trump and family have made high-profile visits to Israel, including attending the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem.
Critics say the move is simply a public relations stunt ahead of Israel’s second round of elections at the end of the summer. Supporters point to Trump’s recent move to recognize the Golan Heights as belonging to Israel. In 1967, the Golan belonged to Syria and was seized by Israel during the Six-Day War. It has been a point of conflict ever since, with activists demanding Israel leave the Golan and Israel responding by pointing out the Golan’s strategic location being necessary for Israeli defense.